How to Build a Live Streaming App: Features and Cost (2024)

What associations do you have in your mind when you hear the word combination “live streaming app”? Let us guess. It’s highly likely that you will recollect Instagram Live stories, TikTok, Facebook Live, or Twitch TV. Or maybe you think about on-demand services like Netflix or Hulu. However, today video streaming app development has gone significantly further and this functionality boasts popularity not only in the entertainment segment. It has become a comprehensive part of numerous systems used by companies from different industries.

In this article, we are going to analyze the current state of thelive streaming app developmentmarket, have a look at the key functionality of such apps, and explain how industries are being transformed under the impact of this technology.

Live streaming app development in figures

According to the results of thestudyconducted by Market Research Future (MRFR), the volume of the world’s live streaming market is expected to reach an impressive $534.37 billion by 2030. The projected CAGR for the period between 2020-2030 is to be over 29%.

Though at the moment the market growth is boosted primarily by such giants as Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Vimeo, and IBM, there is still a lot of space for newcomers. And there are weighty reasons to believe that the entrance of new strong players will take place in the nearest future given the increase in demand forsteaming app development.

One of the factors that greatly influenced the globallive streaming app developmentsegment was the COVID-19 pandemic and all the related lockdown measures and restrictions. While many huge events were just canceled, some others still took place but without visitors. However, thanks to video streaming, people had a chance to “visit” the long-awaited matches or concerts at least virtually. Moreover, live streaming can become a good solution for those who do not have the possibility to travel.

But does all this mean that an idea to build a live streaming app will make sense only if you organize events and do not want to miss your audience? Definitely not. And we’d like to prove it further.

Types of live streaming apps

Before turning to a company for ordering video streaming app development services, it is necessary to decide what app you want to launch. There are several types of live streaming applications.

  • Live broadcasting apps.

These solutions let users broadcast live video and audio content to other users who have received access to their streams. Twitch, Periscope, and Youtube Live are the brightest examples of such apps.

  • Audio streaming apps.

These applications allow users to stream only sound without a picture. It means that other users can only listen to what you are transmitting. Examples of apps of this type are Apple Music and Spotify.

  • Video on-demand (VoD) apps.

With these applications, users can watch their favorite shows not only online but also when they have time for it. Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, YouTube TV belong to this group.

What industries can benefit from streaming app development?

If you are wondering whether video streaming application development can bring any fruits to your business, we offer you to have a look at the following use cases of this functionality within different niches.

The entertainment industry and social media

This industry has greatly changed after streaming technologies were introduced. Today influencers on such applications as TikTok and Instagram regularly organize live streaming events that attract millions of users. Moreover, as we’ve already mentioned above live concerts, games and matches have become a part of our new reality after 2020.


Telemedicine and telehealth apps are aimed at providing patients and doctors with the possibility to organize their interactions in a remote format. As a result, users can save the time and money that traditionally were spent to get to a hospital and can receive medical recommendations significantly faster even without a necessity to leave home. Thanks to streaming features, doctors can see their patients in real-time, talk to them, and analyze their reactions and visual look. All this helps to ensure the efficiency of treatment and accuracy of diagnosis.


Live video streaming app development has also changed the way we imagine education today. If earlier education was associated with classes, desks, blackboards, and books, today many students all over the world enjoy the benefits of online education with online lessons. Some educational institutions use already existing platforms, while others prefer to create their own live streaming apps with functionality that is fully tailored to the needs of their students.


eCommerce use live streaming for letting potential buyers see what their goods look like without any illusions that can be caused by getting references from photos. At the moment, the tendency to use streaming features is rather popular among Chinese sellers. However, it is sensible to predict that businesses all over the world will also adopt this trend.

4 Steps to build a live streaming app

Though the development process of software products of any type looks practically the same, there are some points that are specific to live streaming app development. Let’s have a look at them.

Step 1. Define the needs of your audience and choose a monetization strategy.

First of all, you should analyze, what your potential users expect from our future product, and identify the most important features. Secondly, do not forget to decide on the ways that your app will bring you money. It can be a paid app, or you can offer some premium paid features, or maybe you can earn money on ads.

Step 2. Choose a reliable tech stack and a hosting platform.

While some companies prefer to use the cheapest options, quite often it turns out to be not the best choice. Your audience deserves to have content of the best quality and you are definitely interested in providing users with the best watching experience ever. That’s why reliability (not the lowest price) should be your priority.

Step 3. Build and test your MVP.

When you are going to create a live streaming app, it is recommended to start with a minimum viable product (MVP). It will help you to test your idea without investing (and losing)huge amounts of money. If you are fully satisfied with your app, you can proceed to the development of a full-scale product.

Step 4. Release and maintain your app.

When everything is ready, you can release your final product. Please, make sure that it is fully bug-free and that it works fully as it is supposed to. After the app launch, it will be necessary to monitor its performance and introduce updates if it is required.

Live streaming app development features

If you are considering the possibility todevelop a live streaming app, it’s worth analyzing the most highly demanded features that are required for this type of solution. Of course, there are some basic features that will surely come to your mind as soon as you start recollecting any modern apps regardless of their type. These basic features are signup options, verification, personal account, etc.

But let’s have a look at the functionality that is specific for streaming apps. It doesn’t mean that all of the features that we will mention below should be built for your app. Maybe, your solution won’t need some of them or, vice versa, the functionality of your custom solution can be significantly richer.

  • Chat

The necessity of this feature depends on the tasks that your app is supposed to deal with. But for the majority of edtech or telehealth solutions with video streaming features, this functionality is a must. If we are talking about traditional streaming solutions (like platforms used by gamers or social media apps), chats are also very useful for establishing communication between streamers and viewers.

  • Subscriptions

This functionality allows users to follow their favorite influencers or channels in order not to miss their streams. In some cases, subscriptions can be paid.

  • Donation system

The idea of monetization of streams is based on a potential desire of viewers to financially support streamers. It can be done by donating some amounts on a voluntary basis. That’s why in video streaming development, it is crucial to create a convenient and safe way to make payments.

  • Downloading and Offline mode.

It is obvious that users do not always have time to watch streaming sessions in real time. That’s why it will be a good idea to add a feature that allows downloading videos as well as a feature that provides the possibility to watch videos even when users do not have an internet connection. It means that in this case, users do not need to download videos and can watch (and re-watch) them later directly in the app.

  • Filter-based search

A clear search system based on different filters lets users quickly find channels or content that can be interesting to them.

  • Recommendations

You can enrich your app with AI-powered tools that will offer users channels or streams that will be related to their previous choices and preferences.

  • Schedule and notifications

You can build a scheduling functionality that is intended for helping users to plan their time and see the exact dates and timeframes of the events that they want to watch. Moreover, push notifications will remind them about upcoming streams.

  • Hosting other streamers

This feature was introduced by Twitch and since that time it has become rather popular in video streaming mobile app development. When some streamers are inactive, to support the activity on their channels, they can host online sessions conducted by other streamers.

Have an idea for a video streaming app?

Our developers have solid expertise in building apps of this type and are always ready to help you with this task!

Contact us!

Tech stack for building live streaming apps

When you are going to launch a video streaming platform, it is important to understand what technologies and tools your developers should know to create a live streaming app. Below you can find a list of the most popular technologies that are widely used for building an application of this type.

  • Programming languages: Java, Kotlin, Swift
  • Content delivery network: Amazon CloudFront, Cloudfare
  • Database: Oracle, MySQL
  • API Server: Node.js
  • Hosting: Amazon EC2
  • Streaming protocols: RTMP, WebRTC
  • Media processing platform: Wowza, DaCast
  • Push notification: Firebase notifications
  • Messaging queues: AWS Simple Queue System

How much does it cost to create a live streaming app

When it comes to the necessity to name the exact amounts that you will have to invest in live streaming app development, it is impossible to precisely calculate the costs without analyzing the project requirements. There are many factors that influence the price, like the desired functionality, the technologies that will be used, and the number of specialists that will be involved.

Another crucial parameter to bear in mind when you want to develop a live streaming app is the project timeframes. They are also usually set by a development team after the analysis of all the requirements and the functionality that should be created. On average, the live streaming platform development process takes from 3-4 months. And the costs usually start at $20,000 but can greatly vary in accordance with the project specificity.

Key challenges of video streaming application development

Before you start building yourvideo streaming platform, we recommend you take into account the major challenges and pitfalls that you can face.

How to Build a Live Streaming App: Features and Cost (1)

  • Security. If your app works on a subscription base, it is very important to protect users' sensitive data. Reliable encryption algorithms will help to minimize the risks of data loss and damage. That's the first issue. The second one is related to copyrights of the streaming content.
  • Scalability.The main goal any business that launches alive streaming platformwants to achieve is to increase the number of users. However, the growing user base can bring some issues. Yo ur app should be scalable enough and should be ready to work under high loads.
  • Video quality. There is a row of external factors that can negatively influence streaming quality. Though we all understand it, interruptions and poor image quality can lead to serious reputational losses of your business and user dissatisfaction. To avoid any unpleasant consequences, you can add an auto quality adjustment feature that will ensure the appropriate video streaming quality based on the current network state.

Video streaming app development by Cogniteq

Our developers have rich expertise in building solutions that are powered by video streaming features. Thanks to the deep knowledge and excellent skills of our engineers, we can deliver innovative apps that demonstrate excellent performance and solve all the set tasks. Let us mention a couple of successfully launched software products developed by our team.

One of these apps isPRISM Therapy Online. It is a web application built for the healthcare industry. Users visit this platform, fill in a short assessment form, and get access to a list of the recommended therapists that have the best skills to deal with the described issues. After making a choice and booking an appointment, users can make payments. Consultations on the platform can be held in two formats: live text chats or video calls.

How to Build a Live Streaming App: Features and Cost (2)

The second project that we want to tell you about is anonline course platformwith video streaming. It is an e-learning platform with a subscription system that can be used for distance school education, staff training, and individual lessons. We also built mobile versions of this solution for Android and iOS users. At the moment of the product launch, it was the only web platform with online courses that also has live streaming functionality. The platform allows users to test the knowledge of their students and carry out certifications.

How to Build a Live Streaming App: Features and Cost (3)

Instead of a closing word

As you can see live streaming development segment is growing rather fast together with the increasing demand for edtech, telehealth, and entertainment solutions with the relevant functionality. Moreover, there are some industries, like eCommerce, that are now gaining momentum in adopting live streaming as a new standard. That’s why if you have an idea for an app, it can be a very good time to start working on its realization. If you are looking for professional developers who will be able to help you, our team is always at your disposal. Do not hesitate tocontact us.


  • What are the most popular types of live streaming development solutions?

If we are talking about traditional types of these solutions, we can define live video streaming apps (like Twitch), on-demand video streaming platforms (like Netflix), and video streaming applications from TV providers (for example, HBO NOW).

  • What are the benefits of video streaming app development for businesses?

With live streaming apps, businesses can reach a wide audience simultaneously, attract new users, increase conversion rate, and expand the range of content types that can become available to their clients.

How to Build a Live Streaming App: Features and Cost (2024)


How to Build a Live Streaming App: Features and Cost? ›

Here's a table for the app development cost estimate for 1 platform with an average rate of $50 per hour but also additional works like design, QA, project management and others that may be added by request. So the average cost of building a live video streaming app is from $26K to $48K.

How much does it cost to build a live streaming app? ›

Here's a table for the app development cost estimate for 1 platform with an average rate of $50 per hour but also additional works like design, QA, project management and others that may be added by request. So the average cost of building a live video streaming app is from $26K to $48K.

How do I make a live streaming app? ›

How To Build a Live Streaming App in 9 Steps
  1. Create a Team.
  2. Choose an Online Video Host.
  3. Choose Your Content Delivery Network.
  4. Download SDK for iOS or Android.
  5. Load SDK to Mobile Development Software.
  6. Begin Live Streaming App Development.
  7. Package and Submit App.
Feb 22, 2023

What is needed to start live streaming? ›

As a beginner, you need five basic things to go live: a camera, streaming software, a microphone, a computer and a good internet connection. You can also add accessories that will drastically improve the quality of your live stream without too much effort.

How do I make my own streaming platform? ›

How to make your own streaming service, step by step
  1. Choose your niche.
  2. Figure out who'll pay for your service.
  3. Find a video streaming platform.
  4. Decide on a monetization strategy.
  5. Create your streaming website.
  6. Set up your content.
  7. Create your video streaming apps.
Apr 19, 2023

How do I set up a paid Livestream? ›

Explore the steps below to learn more.
  1. Step 1: Create an event from a business Page. ...
  2. Step 2: Under event admission, select paid. ...
  3. Step 3: Enter event details, such as date and time. ...
  4. Step 4: Enter a price for your event. ...
  5. Step 5: Select a platform to host your paid online event.

How does live streaming apps work? ›

A video streaming app is a mobile application that can be downloaded onto mobile devices and TVs, where users can easily access and stream your content. From Android to iOs, streamers can view your video-on-demand (vod), real-time live streams, and other content just by clicking an icon on their home screen.

How many streams do you need to make a living? ›

Remember, this result may be lower based on certain factors such as if only half of your song was listened to. Therefore, in order for you to receive a decent wage from streaming on Spotify, your songs will need to have over 300,000 streams per month.

What is the easiest streaming platform to make money? ›

Twitch pros
  • It's the most popular platform, and it's recognisable for viewers. ...
  • It's easy to earn on Twitch once you're an Affiliate or Partner.
  • The subscription model is simple and effective in the long term.
  • There are many websites you can check your Twitch stats on.
  • It has a particular vibe people like.
Jan 13, 2023

How do free streaming platforms make money? ›

Advertising on streaming platforms

This includes commercials that might play during video content or before and after video content. There are even some streaming services that solely rely on this business model for profits, meaning they don't charge subscriptions for users or fees for downloading their applications.

How to create a streaming API? ›

  1. Overview.
  2. Step 1 - Download Streaming Integrator and Dependencies.
  3. Step 2 - Create the Siddhi Application.
  4. Step 3 - Deploy the Siddhi Application.
  5. Step 4 - Run the Siddhi Application.
  6. Step 5 - Update the Siddhi Application.
  7. Step 6 - Handle Errors.
  8. Step 7 - Monitor Statistics.

How many streams to make $1000 a month? ›

How many streams on Spotify = $1000? On average, you'll have to earn 300,000 to 350,000 streams to generate roughly $1000. Due to those variables we mentioned above, however, streams are not created equally.

How much do you get paid for 1 million streams? ›

For instance, based on my knowledge, as an artist, you will make: The average price per stream is $0.004. $4 for every 1,000 streams. $4000 for each million streams.

How many viewers do you need to make money streaming? ›

Monetize your account with the Twitch Affiliate program

50 followers. 500 total minutes broadcast. Seven unique broadcast days. Three or more concurrent viewers on average.

How many viewers does a streamer need to make a living? ›

How many viewers do you need to make money from Twitch? To make full-time money as a Twitch streamer, you'll need about 1,000 subscribers. You'll have to really hustle to build up your audience.

How many followers do you need to make money streaming? ›

How much money do Twitch streamers make? In order to become a Twitch Affiliate, you need at least 50 followers and an average of three concurrent viewers or more over the last 30 days. To become a Twitch Partner, you must average 75 concurrent viewers or more over 30 days.

How do I start a streaming business? ›

Here are a few significant steps you need to take to start a streaming platform.
  1. Find your niche. ...
  2. Focus on your target audience. ...
  3. Find your content. ...
  4. Choose the monetization model. ...
  5. Review streaming platform requirements. ...
  6. Build an MVP before pouring millions of VC money.

Is live streaming a business? ›

Live streaming business owners make money by broadcasting live video gaming footage on popular platforms while making use of ad revenue. Popular websites like Twitch.TV and Smashcast (formerly Azubu) create great platforms for gamers to share their content.

How to sell online live streaming? ›

Here are a few tips on how to host a successful livestream shopping event.
  1. Promote your sale ahead of the event and follow up afterwards. ...
  2. Select the right products for the sale. ...
  3. Don't waste the first few minutes. ...
  4. Turn it into a fun conversation. ...
  5. Create a visually appealing set. ...
  6. Conduct a test run.

Does Facebook pay you for live streaming? ›

Once they're eligible, on average, full-time gaming streamers on Facebook can earn $2750- $5500 per month. While there are plenty of monetization options for content creators with Facebook Live, the requirements are pretty high. Plus, you have to share the revenue with Facebook.

What are the disadvantages of live streaming? ›

The most obvious downside to live streaming is there are no do-overs! Having no room for errors means extra caution and planning before going live with your stream. It's essential to check things like your company's internet bandwidth, tech equipment.

What is the difference between live streaming and live broadcasting? ›

People will talk about “streaming” something on their device but not “broadcasting” it. Streaming is an act of building a connection with a source over which data can be sent (and received). Broadcasting is the act of just sending media out into the ether for people with the right equipment to pick up on a whim.

How many streams to make $100 dollars? ›

How Many Spotify Streams Do You Need To Earn Minimum Wage?
Desired Income/MonthStreams Needed Per Month
$1,257 (Minimum Wage)314,250
3 more rows
Jul 22, 2020

How much do small streams make? ›

Small streamers can earn anywhere between $50 to $1,500 per month depending on their subscriber count, viewership, and how generous their followers are. At the very start, when you have next-to-no followers, you should expect to make nothing.

What is the fastest growing streaming service? ›

Paid, ad-supported video on demand services such as Disney+ Basic and Netflix Basic now make up the fastest-growing category in streaming, with 33% growth year on year from 2021 to 2022 (Kantar).

What is the most successful streaming app? ›

Netflix still dominates as the most subscribed to video streaming service, with 231 million subscribers. 82 million Americans pay an average of $10 a month for on-demand music streaming service and Spotify dominates.

Do streamers make money without donations? ›

Like most other social media platforms, Twitch streamers can make money in a variety of ways. Some of these include: Subscriptions (streamers can charge a monthly fee for access to their channel) Donations (viewers can send monetary donations to streamers during their streams)

What is the difference between streaming and API? ›

Streaming API vs REST API – essential differences

REST API leverages client-server architecture. Hence a user makes a request and the server responds with the information that the user needs. Streaming APIs updates, on the other hand, are sent to the user immediately as events occur.

Can I build my own API? ›

How to Create an API
  1. Determine Your Requirements. First, you'll need to determine your API requirements. ...
  2. Design Your API. Next, you'll need to consider API design. ...
  3. Develop Your API. Now, it's time to start developing your API product. ...
  4. Test Your API. ...
  5. Publish/Deploy Your API. ...
  6. Monitor Your API.
Feb 7, 2023

How much does it cost to make an app like twitch? ›

Video streaming and audio streaming require different tech stack as well. If we were to make a very rough assumption, to make a Twitch-like web platform, you'll need about $90,000 or more. For a mobile app, it would be $30,000 per app (iOS or Android).

How much do streaming services pay per 1,000 streams? ›

Spotify generally pays between $0.003 and $0.005 per stream, which means $3 and $5 for every 1,000 streams. While this may not seem like a lot of money, it's important to note that these numbers are only averages. The actual payout can vary significantly depending on the abovementioned factors.

Is it cheaper to build an app or website? ›

Web apps are cheaper to develop, because you only need one product. However, if you care about the quality, user experience, and your project is not extra simple, these days $15k may also not be enough.

How do I make a streaming app like Netflix? ›

How to create a video streaming app like Netflix?
  1. Find Your Niche. Your prime objective is to find the type of content that you want to stream on your video-streaming app. ...
  2. Choose your content availability. ...
  3. Choose the monetization model. ...
  4. Know your requirements. ...
  5. UI/UX Design. ...
  6. Create an on-demand MVP model. ...
  7. Gather feedback.
Jan 12, 2023

How much does Twitch pay per live stream? ›

The cost of a Twitch subscription ranges from roughly $5–$25 per month—with the money split evenly between streamers and Twitch itself. That means streamers earn anywhere from $2.50–$12.50 per subscription per month.

Does Twitch pay streamers? ›

They will continue to receive their share of a subscription payment until the subscriber actively cancels the subscription. Successful streamers can make $3,000 to $5,000 per month from their subscribers, with the top broadcasters earning substantially more.

How much money does 1 million streams make? ›

For instance, based on my knowledge, as an artist, you will make: The average price per stream is $0.004. $4 for every 1,000 streams. $4000 for each million streams.

How much money does it take to develop an app? ›

The cost of developing an app can range from $40,000 to $300,000 and up. Many factors influence the price, depending on the complexity of the app development, at 40$ per hour, the average cost will be: Simple App Development Cost – $40,000 to $60,000. Average App Development Cost – $60,000 to $150,000.

How much does it cost to make an app by yourself? ›

The tentative cost to build a mobile app is $40,000 to $150,000 and can exceed $300,000 in some cases. The keyword here is tentative because many factors like app type, functionality, complexity, selected vendor, and the development approach may influence it.

How much does it cost to launch an app? ›

According to the latest industry reports that the cost to create a mobile application is between $30,000 and $250,000, with an average cost of $171,450. Keep in mind that these figures are only estimates and the final cost may be significantly more or less based on the particular project's requirements.


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